Blues and Soul Music Magazine

Issue 1101

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Silky Steps: Universal Language (Funk Embassy)




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UK release date 01.06.2023

Silky Steps are a 5-piece band from Estonia's capital Pernau. They have their own unique blend of neo-soul, nu-disco and pop-funk. The group features both male and female lead vocals singing about the seamy adult side of life. Their music is driven by a slinky guitar and synths and smooth basslines that will get you in the mood for all sorts of things!

“Universal Language" proves to be particularly noteworthy, as they take their game to the next level in 2023. Their second single, "Fly, Goodbye", was recently played on BBC 6 by the respected Cerys Matthews. The track features Robert Linna of Lexsoul Dancemachine adding his falsetto tones, while "Falling For You" features a rap by MC Roki and the title track (more about that later) is a collaboration with Rahel.

Opener "Music" is instant fun with a Daft Punk vibe which meets Herbie Hancock's, "I Thought It Was You" in his talk box era and features some classy disco guitar. The glossy production continues with cutesy vocals imbuing pop perfection in the shape of the string-laden "Haven". Downtempo disco at its best.

Tempos are a thing with this band, they groove at their best when it’s the bare minimum. "Interlude", with its neo-classical chord structure and jittery string synth blessedness, is a case in point. It’s a touch of genius that teases us as it comes grindingly, yet slowly, to a halt with a sharp ending. We want more! "Boy Toy" exudes Prince and the guitar sounds could have come from U2's "Achtung Baby".

Finally, the tempo ramps up as we enter the denouement of this intriguing album with the electro funkiness of "I Like It I Love It", awash with thick and adventurous synths, clipped guitar and two-to-the-floor drums again, the influence of his purpleness isn’t too far away

"Universal Language", the title track, has an anthemic feel about it and glues the whole album together, proving they don’t have a long way to go to get further into the public consciousness. They are, no doubt, on their way with this exemplary and highly polished offering.
Words Emrys Baird

From Jazz Funk & Fusion To Acid Jazz

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